[This post from October 14, 2005 contains most of the pertinent background about this disturbed individual. The letter at the end from one of his former students--which was sent to Burgess-Jackson and cc'd to me, so he knows that it (unlike most of what he posts) is authentic--is especially telling. Meanwhile, a prospective PhD student alerted me to this parody site which is, at least, good for a laugh about this otherwise pathetic saga.]
Great news for Kansas schoolchildren. The state board of education has voted to require that they be exposed to the same debate that is taking place among philosophers and scientists. This fight is not about imposing religion on schoolchildren. It is about keeping scientists from imposing their secularism on schoolchildren.
(Bear in mind that Burgess-Jackson was sliced and diced by the philosophers of biology [see esp. the link to Professor Millstein's comments] on this topic a few weeks back--but, as we have had occasion to note, this strange man is "uneducable.")
Is it wrong of me to delight in France's destruction? Any idiot could have seen that allowing Muslims to immigrate would destroy French culture. France is a Christian country, with Christian traditions, Christian values, and Christian culture. Christians and Muslims will never live together peacefully.
As someone remarked, Burgess-Jackson is "a man who will say almost anything without regard for truth or decency."
UPDATE: A final word on Keith Burgess-Jackson (KBJ), who is really cracking up in response to my linking to his right-wing ravings again. That KBJ is a delusional liar, who makes things up out of whole cloth would not matter except for the unhappy fact that KBJ is also irrationally obsessed with yours truly and thus will say anything about me without regard for truth or decency. Unfortunately, this stupid man (a "nutter," as one conservative philosopher put it to me) has been smearing me with abandon for almost two years now, for reasons I've noted before. His latest delusional fantasy is precious: "I get e-mail regularly from professors and students (including his own students) who thank me for standing up to him." Keith, you don't get such e-mails (you are projecting again, since you are the one who has received an e-mail from a former student complaining about your abusiveness, an e-mail cc'd to me), and you aren't "standing up" to me or anyone else: you are simply creating a public record of your own mental disintegration. Get help.
ONE MORE: A reader just pointed out to me this latest gem from KBJ: "How can you be a philosopher of X without having expertise in X, and how can you have expertise in X without having the credentials of those who practice X? I'm a lawyer, for example. I've been trained to think like a lawyer. I've practiced law. I know the law from the inside. That, plus my philosophical training, is what qualifies me to be a philosopher of law. If I had no formal legal training, I would be a fraud if I called myself a philosopher of law." Apparently KBJ's teachers, the philosophers of law Joel Feinberg and Jules Coleman, are frauds (perhaps the mad KBJ will give Professor Coleman a pass because he earned a one-year degree from Yale Law School for non-lawyers interested in studying some law). Other "frauds" who purport to be philosophers of law would include John Gardner, the Professor of Jurisprudence at Oxford, Gerald Postema at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Leslie Green at Osgoode and Texas.
Somebody really needs to help this man.
THE FINAL INSTALLMENT [REALLY!] (NOV. 12): This is actually getting funny, in a slightly "black humor" kind of way. Whatever I say about KBJ, he turns around and repeats it back directed at me. I point out what everyone knows (even his fellow conservative philosophers)--that the man seems a bit loony--and he turns around and proclaims "Leiter's Nietzschean Descent into Madness" (at least its Nietzschean!). Then his delusional paranoia takes over:
For years, he has counted on everyone being intimidated by him. His M.O., as I've pointed out before, is to threaten—and thereby stifle—those who disagree with him.
You'll note, of course, that I've not "threatened" KBJ once in this entire, increasingly peculiar exchange. I've pointed out that he is irrational, dishonest, and strange, but, alas, there are no threats to be found. KBJ has his own "evidence" of course (all delusional paranoids do, don't they?), none of which involve threats, and some of which don't even make sense, but no matter. (It is amazing, though, that he cites the discredited article by Hunter Baker from National Review! Keith: harsh criticism of incompetence or irrationality is not a "threat." I realize you may experience it as threatening, but that tells us more about you.)
Anyway, this new round of vitriol from KBJ was prompted by the preceding Update, to which he now retorts:
Leiter may not realize this, but Joel Feinberg, my beloved teacher, made many mistakes in his work on philosophy of law. Just ask Jules Coleman, who, like me, studied under Joel. Jules told me a few months ago that the book he took over, Philosophy of Law, was filled with mistakes and confusions. I agreed. Some of them were embarrassing. This is not to criticize Joel, who was a fabulous philosopher. It is to observe that his lack of legal training hurt his philosophical work on law. (It did not affect his work in moral or social philosophy.)
Well, at least KBJ has backed away from calling Joel a "fraud." (A couple of readers suggested that KBJ's obsession with me may be related to the fact that I was offered the job at Arizona as Joel's replacement more than a dozen years ago. Perhaps.) I'll certainly ask Jules Coleman about his assessment of Feinberg--given KBJ's track record, the representations above are likely rank fiction. [Ed.-I have removed the comment originally here because, on reflection, it seemed inappropriate. My irritation with KBJ led me to sink to his level, which I regret.]
Jules Coleman is a good philosopher of law in spite of his lack of legal training.
No doubt Jules will rest easy tonight!
He would be better—I think he'll admit it—if he had earned a law degree, and even better yet if he had practiced. My point is simple (but obviously out of Leiter's intellectual reach): To be a good (or excellent) philosopher of X, one must have expertise in X, either through formal training in a discipline or, in the case of a profession such as law, through having been a practitioner.
Actually, KBJ's original "point," in his own words, was that, "If I had no formal legal training, I would be a fraud if I called myself a philosopher of law." But since his original point was absurd, I'm glad he's revised it.
It certainly doesn't tell you what KBJ claimed, namely, that anyone without a law degree and a degree in philosophy is a "fraud" if they purport to be a philosopher of law. But let's get back on point here (this is isn't hard, Keith, you just have to read what you wrote and what I wrote): are John Gardner, Jerry Postema, and Leslie Green frauds? How about Michael Moore, Fred Schauer? Each of these folks lacks one of the relevant credentials. The simple fact is that KBJ's initial posting was silly, confusing credentials for competence and knowledge as manifested in scholarly work.
Leiter needs to think before he writes. He continues to make an ass of himself in public.
Who was it who said that "the fundamental event" on KBJ's blog is "projection"?
Addendum: I'm not saying that formal training in law is sufficient for being a good philosopher of law. Leiter himself disproves that proposition.
Drats, I had hoped to use KBJ as a reference!
Addendum 2: Every time Leiter attacks me, which he has been doing repeatedly for several weeks, I reply (often in kind, just to show him how it feels to be abused). The links he provides to my blog bring his readers here, where they can see what a thug he is. Either he's not very smart or he's a glutton for punishment (or both).
Actually, Keith, I've commented on your pathetic displays exactly twice: in this thread, and one other thread a month ago. It is you who has posted abusive remarks "repeatedly" over the past "several weeks" (indeed, over the past 20 months). (Don't you understand it's this kind of display that leads readers to observe that "projection" is your primary psychological defense mechanism? You repeatedly attribute to others your own failings and misconduct.) I'm sure it is comforting for you to think that what readers of my blog are learning is that I'm the one who is a "thug" and not very smart, but the evidence might give you some pause about this optimistic assessment.
Cheer up, though, as various folks have advised, I'm going back to my old policy of ignoring you. However, please do get some help: I hope you have many more years as a productive legal philosopher, and that you can get over the irrational and delusional obsession with me.